Are You Glad I'm Here

An intriguing drama - 7/10

by The Movie Inspector

An intriguing drama, Are You Glad I’m Here is a well crafted Lebanese film that keeps audiences invested through its engaging narrative. What truly allows this film to maintain Its quality is the lead actors’ chemistry and the pressing subject matter.

I entered the movie theatre not really knowing what to expect from this movie but by the time it was done I knew that I watched something unique. The fact that this film touches on matters such as domestic violence and women empowerment, and confronts these taboo matters proves that it’s quite daring and the end result definitely pays off. Being director Noor Ghazeddine’s first feature film, proves just how talented she is and places her as a great up-and-coming Lebanese filmmaker, and I’m definitely excited to see what she does next! ‘Are You Glad I’m Here’ follows Kirsten, a young American woman who befriends Nadine, a Lebanese Housewive as they develop an unlikely bond that grows over time.

The movie kicks off with a great opening scene that seeks to foreshadow a future plot-point and at the same time captivate audiences, and I honestly thought it was quite effective. The mood is set from the very beginning and helps provide some insight to the world of our characters. As soon as the lead characters meet, we instantly sense their bond and this really allows you to care for both of them. I thought that both women had enough depth and development to allow audiences to connect with them, and pivotal moments proved that. Marwa Khalil and Tess Elliot fit in their roles quite naturally and delivered good performances. 

What’s really striking about this movie is how well-shot it is. It’s clear that there was a dedicated crew and director behind this project. All the shots felt so smooth and rich in detail, something that lots of Lebanese productions miss out on. My main issue with the movie though is it’s rough transitions when it came to highlighting the passage of time and the slightly underwhelming climax. Don’t get me wrong it does end well but in my opinion kind of went off-beat. Finally, important themes such as familial bonds, domestic abuse and discrimination against woman are dealt with effectively and most of all shows the importance of family. I highly advise everyone to give this movie a shot and witness this unique Lebanese production. 


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